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Identité technique et comportements économiques des groupes proto-aurignaciens à la grotte de l’Observatoire (principauté de Monaco)

Abstract : This paper introduces first results and comments concerning the Proto-Aurignacian lithic assemblage from the grotte de l’Observatoire (Principality of Monaco) and highlights the importance of this area for our perception of the earlier phase of the Upper Palaeolithic in Western Europe. This study confirms the attribution of layers G and F to the Proto-Aurignacian complex (Onoratini et al., 1999). The lithic reduction sequences are characterized by a selection of raw materials of high suitability, the coexistence of two unipolar production systems, one laminar, one lamellar, and by a typological corpus dominated by lateralized and inversely retouched bladelets (Dufour bladelet, subtype Dufour). These technological signatures are similar to those described in the current literature, giving the impression of a homogeneous techno-complex across Western Europe. The features of the lithic assemblage characterize short-term occupations, within a framework of a high residential mobility and long distances of circulation (> 130 km). In that sense, the techno-economical data fit with the scenario of the arrival of the first anatomically modern humans who would have followed the Mediterranean Arc as a way of dispersion. However, the location of the lithic raw materials sources (85 % of the raw materials come from the west) nuances the hypothesis of a continuous and gradual progression of these pioneering populations. Data suggests a scenario of a human dispersion characterized by episodes of stasis.
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Guillaume Porraz, Patrick Simon, Amaranta Pasquini. Identité technique et comportements économiques des groupes proto-aurignaciens à la grotte de l’Observatoire (principauté de Monaco). Gallia Préhistoire – Préhistoire de la France dans son contexte européen, CNRS Éditions, 2010, 52, pp.33-59. ⟨10.3406/galip.2010.2470⟩. ⟨halshs-00586193⟩

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